The Top 5 Sites in the U.S.: What can we learn as marketers?

According to research done by Market Intelligence Central, the most-visited websites in the United States have largely been the same for the past several years. The list is as follows:
1. Google
2. Facebook
3. YouTube
4. Yahoo
5. Amazon
Additionally, the research implies the popular video site YouTube is about to surpass Facebook for the number 2 spot! In fact, Facebook has seen a loss of about 2.8 billion visits each month over the past 2 years. Engagement with Facebook posts has also seen a significant loss, with the company revealing a plateaued number of daily active users in the United States and Canada- the company’s largest markets. Combine this information with YouTube’s increased number of site visits along with growing views of its content on platforms such as its YouTube app and ChromeCast; it is likely that it will outrank Facebook within the next 3 months.
So what should we take away from this list as marketing professionals? Google, the number 1 site on the list, is known by virtually everyone in the industry as an incredibly powerful marketing tool with its numerous and diverse features. What does this mean for your usage of Facebook? Keep at it.
But what about YouTube? Chances are that you’ve definitely spent an entire afternoon watching funny videos of animals. It is an excellent source for funny and entertaining content, but it is also becoming a crucial tool for marketers. In fact, “nearly half of all marketers (48%) plan to add YouTube to their marketing strategy over the next 12 months” according to State of Inbound report.
You may think that your audience isn’t located on the platform… but think again! A third of all online activity is spent watching video content and YouTube has over one billion ACTIVE users. It can be accessed in 76 languages, has virtually no competitors and as the world’s second largest search engine, it can be utilized to improve your SEO and overall brand presence.
We can understand that YouTube as a marketing tool can initially seem intimidating to brands, but after the creation of your channel, there are several steps you can take to become a “marketing pro” on the platform. First, you should optimize your video’s metadata. Basically, metadata gives viewers information about your video. This includes information such as the title, description, tags, category, thumbnail, subtitles and closed captions. Providing the correct information in your video’s metadata will help ensure that it is properly indexed by YouTube and shows as a result when people are searching for content like yours. Remember to keep it straightforward and concise when filling out metadata! Your content may be removed by moderators if you try and promote it with irrelevant keywords. Second, create regular content. In order to build an audience and regularly increase your presence on YouTube, it is important to consistently update your channel with content, keeping your channel feed active. Try to aim for one video per week, but the correct amount of content is dependent on one’s audience and goals. Lastly, a strategy that is becoming extremely popular among those creating content on YouTube that initially may seem unimportant is to create an interesting thumbnail! Some goofy hacks that marketers have been using include arrows, circles and even a huge version of their logo right on video thumbnails. The logic is that even if no one clicks on your video, you’re still drawing awareness and spreading your brand.

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Sources:
https://www.hubspot.com/youtube-marketing
https://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/facebook-losing-second-highest-website-status
https://neilpatel.com/blog/youtube- marketing-guide/